Saturday, April 4, 2020
Authors Author Directory David Harbourne

David Harbourne


David Harbourne was born and brought up in Yorkshire, went away for a while and now david-harbournelives in York. He first worked in the Ministry of Agriculture before moving into vocational education and training. He gave it all up to write his first travel book, Penguins under the porch: a Yorkshireman’s ode to Oamaru. This was either very brave or very foolish, depending on your point of view. (He prefers brave.)

Website address:

Blog address:

Twitter: @davidharbourne



Penguins under the porch: a Yorkshireman’s ode to Oamaru was published in May 2018 by Wily Publications, Christchurch, New Zealand, and is available in the UK from YPD Books.

Buy Penguins under the porch: a Yorkshireman’s ode to Oamaru Online


“Penguins under the porch: a Yorkshireman’s ode to Oamaru” is the story of a town on New Zealand’s South Island, built from gleaming limestone in the second half of the nineteenth century. Today, the old town is a time capsule: one intricately carved classical building follows another, hinting at a half-forgotten history of borrowed money and wild optimism.penguins-under-the-porch
Oh, and there are penguins. Lots of them.

David spent many months investigating Oamaru’s past, present and future before writing about New Zealand’s first female novelist, a talented architect, two police sergeants called Bullen, the present-day mayor, the woman building New Zealand’s first moated castle, steampunk and unforgettable food: whitebait frittata, muttonbird and Kürtőskalács (whatever that is).

Pitch to Publishers & Festival Organisers

How do you write your first book? What should you write about? How will you get it published? My answers: book flights to New Zealand, rent a house in a town you hardly know, ask loads of questions, write it all down and pitch to publishers until you find one foolish enough to give it a punt. And along the way, have fun!

Contact email: dhar[bour] (remove brackets before emailing)

Contact telephone? 07738 167106


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